What we are looking at is the largest data set of the universe. It’s terabytes of material.
VIRUP ported it to a 360, 3D immersive and interactive environment which enables anybody to navigate freely in amongst this huge and vast universe.
VIRUP was putting all the data set available into one framework where you can see the universe at different scales, nearby us, around the earth, around the solar system, at the Milky Way level, to see through the universe and time, up to the beginning what we call the big bang.
VIRUP built it in a very malleable framework, an extensible framework, so it can move from a 360 degree, 3D environment to a full dome environment, to a half cave or a full cave environment.
These are the large scale immersive systems of the day. it’s well known that in immersive systems you have a high cognitive loading. The stereo graphics, the immersion, this means you’re able to fully embody a data set and that has a profound effect on the way that you see it.
The data set of the universe is just growing with time. The universe which is based on true data with the new data set that’s coming every day, to make it even richer than today. We are now able to simulate very large portions of the universe which provide us with terabytes of data.
A very important point of VIRUP is that it is a first step towards treating much larger data sets which are coming, I mean, with incredibly complex projects like, for example, the SKA (Square Kilometer Array) we’ll obtain petabytes of data and at some point we’ll have to visualize the data.
So this project is definitely a first step toward treating larger amount of data. So we have billions of objects that we want to show in a virtual reality headset, so you have one here, and those hardware render at 90 frames per second. So we wondered if we could use a usual graphics engine for that, like unreal or unity, but those engines were not suited to the task.
This can do it from scratch and using KD3 algorithms, tweaking it using PID loops and stuff like this, but want to manage to render such a huge amount of data in a virtual reality environment. It’s open source. You can download it. You can use it on your VR setup. You’re able to discover the emptiness, the complexity of the universe, and it’s a new way to explore our world.